By: Kaylyn Hinz
In the past month, a GPC English professor was diagnosed with Tuberculosis. The students in the classes were advised to get tested to take a precautionary action. The Health Department of Newton and two other county health departments have been investigating because test results show some have tested positive. A statement was not sent out to the school for information about TB but only sent to those in the classes. “No need for all students to be notified. Only persons in continuous and close contact with the person that is ill needs to be notified and followed with diagnostic measures,” said Dean White of Health Sciences.
If students from the classes were to test negative then actions would not take place. “If a person tests positive, then the person will have a follow up chest Xray and/or AFB cultures to diagnosis if the TB disease exists. If a person tests positive by skin test only, but negative chest Xray and/or negative AFB cultures, then the person will receive single medication treatment that prevents the person from getting the disease. The person who has a positive skin test will always have a positive skin test due to previous exposure,” said White
According to an anonymous GPC student, if students from the class didn’t get tested, Prevention Health TB Center would find them and force them to get tested. This student tested positive, not from catching the teacher’s disease but by having it previously from six years ago. The student is however healthy and needed to get an X-ray the following week to make sure the Latent TB infection did not turn into the TB disease from the teacher. “If my lungs are active then I would need to be treated,” said GPC student. If the student does test positive then those who have been in close contact would also have to get tested.